Horror royalty Stephen King and Peter Straub face off for top honors in the 4th Annual Black Quill Awards, as nominees have been announced by Dark Scribe Magazine, the virtual magazine “dedicated to the books that keep readers up at night.”

King earned his third Black Quill nod for his epic Under The Dome. He was previously nominated in the short fiction category in 2007 for “The Gingerbread Girl,” which appeared in Esquire Magazine in July of that same year, and again in 2008 for the novel Duma Key, which went on to win the Readers’ Choice award for Dark Genre Novel Of The Year. Straub’s nomination for A Dark Matter is his second Black Quill Award nod. He was nominated in 2008 in the Best Dark Genre Anthology category for his editing work on Poe’s Children: The New Horror. Rounding out the list of contenders for Dark Genre Novel Of The Year is a quartet of first-time nominees that includes Justn Cronin (The Passage), Nate Kenyon (Sparrow Rock), David Zelterserman (The Caretaker Of Lorne Field), and literary darling China Miéville (Kracken).

The Black Quill Awards will be handed out in 7 categories honoring works of dark genre literature – horror, suspense, and thrillers – from both mainstream and small press publishers. While six of the awards recognize literary efforts, one of the awards recognizes book trailer production – a growing marketing aspect of dark genre publishing. This year’s nominees in that category include two nods for former Black Quill Award-winners Circle of Seven Productions for their work on Douglas Clegg’s Neverland and Melissa Marr’s Radiant Shadows book trailers, Michael Knost and Black Water Films for Specters In Coal Dust, Scribner marketing for King’s Under The Dome, and Delirium Books for Brian Keene’s Unhappy Endings.

Prolific genre editor Ellen Datlow – a double nominee and winner last year – added a fourth Black Quill Award nomination to her ever-growing list of honors for her editing work with Nick Mamatas on Haunted Legends. They vie for Best Dark Genre Anthology against editors Maurice Broaddus and Jerry Gordon (for Dark Faith), Michelle McCrary and Joe McKinney (for Dead Set: A Zombie Anthology), and returning nominees RJ Cavender and Boyd E. Harris (for Horror Library Iv) and Bill Breedlove (for When The Night Comes Down).

Small press mainstay John R. Little earns his fourth and fifth nominations, respectively, for his novella Dreams In Black And White (nominated in the Best Small Press Chill category) and for his short fiction collection Little Things. Little took home the Editor’s Choice Award for Best Small Press Chill in 2008 for his novella Miranda. Other returning nominees in the Small Press Chill category include Lisa Morton (The Castle Of Los Angeles) and Jameson Currier (The Wolf At The Door). Morton won top anthology honors last year for her editing work on Midnight Walk, while Currier won last year for his short fiction collection The Haunted Heart And Other Tales. Rounding out this year’s nominees for Best Small Press Chill are first-time nominees Gemma Files (A Bokk Of Tongues) and Norman Prentiss (Invisible Fences).

Little faces off in the Best Dark Fiction Collection against returning nominees Michael Louis Calvillo (for Blood And Gristle) and Paul Tremblay (for In The Mean Time) and first-time nominees Laird Barron (for Occultation) and Japanese literary sensation Otsuichi (for Summer, Fireworks, And My Corpse). Calvillo is a former Black Quill Award winner for his debut novel As Fate Would Have It (which took Best Small Press Chill Honors last year), while Tremblay won in the Best Dark Scribble category in 2008 for his short story “A Blog at the End of the World” and was nominated last year for The Harlequin And The Train in the Best Small Press Chill category.

Nominations for the Black Quills are editorial-based, with both the editors and active contributing writers submitting nominations in each of the (7) categories. Once nominations are announced, readers of DSM cast their votes for their picks in each category. More than 3,300 votes were cast last year by the magazine’s readers. In a unique spin intended to celebrate both critical and popular success, two winners are traditionally announced in each category – Reader’s Choice and Editor’s Choice. Winners receive recognition in DSM, inclusion in press release materials announcing nominations and winners, a virtual icon to be used on their own website, and a handsome award certificate.

A complete list of all the nominees and winners follows:

Dark Genre Novel Of The Year: (Novel-length work of horror, suspense, or thriller from mainstream publisher)

  • A Dark Matter by Peter Straub (Doubleday)
  • Kraken by China Miéville (Del Rey)
  • Sparrow Rock by Nate Kenyon (Leisure / Bad Moon Books)
  • The Caretaker Of Lorne Field by David Zeltserman (Overlook Hardcover)
  • The Passage by Justin Cronin (Ballantine)
  • Under The Dome by Stephen King (Scribner)

Best Small Press Chill: (Novel or novella published by small press publisher)

  • A Book Of Tongues by Gemma Files (ChiZine Publications)
  • Dreams In Black And White by John R. Little (Morning Star)
  • Invisible Fences by Norman Prentiss (Cemetery Dance)
  • The Castle Of Los Angeles by Lisa Morton (Gray Friar Press)
  • The Wolf At The Door by Jameson Currier (Chelsea Street Editions)

Best Dark Genre Fiction Collection: (Single author collection, any publisher)

  • Blood And Gristle by Michael Louis Calvillo (Bad Moon Books)
  • In The Mean Time by Paul Tremblay (ChiZine Publications)
  • Little Things by John R. Little (Bad Moon Books)
  • Occultation by Laird Barron (Night Shade Books)
  • Summer, Fireworks, And My Corpse by Otsuichi (VIZ Media LLC)

Best Dark Genre Anthology: (Multi-author collection, any publisher; awarded to the editor)

  • Dark Faith Edited by Maurice Broaddus and Jerry Gordon (Apex Publications)
  • Dead Set: A Zombie Anthology Edited by Michelle McCrary and Joe McKinney (23 House)
  • Haunted Legends Edited by Ellen Datlow and Nick Mamatas (Tor)
  • Horror Library Iv Edited by RJ Cavender and Boyd E. Harris (Cutting Block Press)
  • When The Night Comes Down Edited by Bill Breedlove (Dark Arts Books)

Best Dark Genre Book Of Non-Fiction: (Any dark genre non-fiction subject, any publisher)

  • Horrors: Great Stories Of Fear And Their Creators by Rocky Wood (McFarland)
  • I Am Providence: The Life And Times Of Hp Lovecraft by S.T. Joshi (Hippocampus Press)
  • Night Of The Living Dead: Behind The Scenes Of The Most Terrifying Zombie Movie Ever by Joe Kane (Citadel)
  • The Conspiracy Against The Human Race by Thomas Ligotti (Hippocampus Press)
  • Thrillers: 100 Must Reads Edited by David Morrell and Hank Wagner (Oceanview Publishing)

Best Dark Scribble: (Single work, non-anthology short fiction appearing in a print or virtual magazine)

  • “Bully” by Jack Ketchum (Postscripts 22/23)
  • “Goblin Boy” by Rick Hautula (Cemetery Dance #63)
  • “Secretario” by Catherynne M. Valente (Weird Tales, Summer 2010)
  • “The Things” by Peter Watts (Clarkesworld, January 2010)
  • “We” by Bentley Little (Cemetery Dance #64)

Best Dark Genre Book Trailer: (book video promoting any work of fiction or non-fiction)

  • Neverland / Produced by Circle of Seven Productions (for the book by Douglas Clegg)
  • Radiant Shadows / Produced by Circle of Seven Productions (for the book by Melissa Marr)
  • Specters In Coal Dust / Produced by Michael Knost & Black Water Films (for the anthology edited by Michael Knost)
  • Under The Dome / Produced by Scribner Marketing (for the book by Stephen King)
  • Unhappy Endings / Produced by Delirium Books (for the book by Brian Keene)

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This